One of the most riveting scenes of Mark Adamo's opera The Gospel of Mary Magdalene occurs when Peter is overcome with grief for having denied Jesus three times before his crucifixion.


As the stage is bathed in blood red light, Peter falls to his knees, wailing, "How many times will I remember this? Seven times seven?" This moment of anguish has inspired other composers to some of their most dramatic and poignant music as well.
Posted: 06/27/2013 by Kayleen Asbo


Last Sunday San Francisco Opera invited a small group to attend and live tweet the final dress rehearsal of The Gospel of Mary Magdalene. The opera by Mark Adamo has its world premiere on Wednesday, June 19, so this was truly a first glimpse for the public.





Posted: 06/19/2013 by San Francisco Opera


Constance Hoffman is a Costume Designer who tells stories, “My medium just happens to be costume.”

Constance and I set out to source the Mary Magdalene textiles, armed with a stack of research books: The Jewish Wardrobe, published by The Israel Museum in Jerusalem, The History of Jewish Costume by Alfred Rubens, Roman Clothing and Fashion by Alexandra Croom; The World of Roman Costume by Judith Lynn Sebesta and, my personal favorite, Facing West-Oriental Jews of Central Asia and the Caucasus (a catalog from a joint exhibit of The Russian Museum of Ethnography in St. Petersburg and The Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam).
Posted: 05/29/2013 by Christopher Verdosci


The wise, knowing half smile on the enigmatic woman's face and the silvery sheen of her cloak have made many viewers assume that this is the work of a very modern painter. Surprise! This image of Mary Magdalene ̶ one which embodies such an air of mystery ̶ was painted in the year 1540 by Giovanni Solvoldo.




Posted: 05/01/2013 by Kayleen Asbo


On a research trip to Amsterdam, Mary Magdalene scholar Kayleen Asbo, visited the Rijksmuseum, a national museum dedicated to the arts and history of the Netherlands. While there she stopped for a look at Jan Van Scorel's 16th century depiction of Mary Magdalene and sent us this summary.




Posted: 04/23/2013 by Kayleen Asbo


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Introduction

Backstage at San Francisco Opera is a fascinating, fast-moving, mysterious and sacred space for the Company’s singers, musicians, dancers, technicians and production crews. Musical and staging rehearsals are on-going, scenery is loaded in and taken out, lighting cues are set, costumes and wigs are moved around and everything is made ready to receive the audience. From the principal singers, chorus and orchestra musicians to the creative teams for each opera, in addition to the many talented folks who don’t take a bow on stage, this blog offers unique insight, both thought-provoking and light-hearted, into the life backstage at San Francisco Opera.

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